C) Calabrese Countergambit, 2....f5

C1) 3.Bxg8
C2) 3.exf5

C5) 3.d3
C6) 3.Nc3
C7) 3.Nf3
C8) 3.f4

Position after 1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 f5

A) 1.e4 e5 2.Bc4 . . .
B) 2....Nc6
C) 2....f5
D) 2....d6
E) 2....Bc5
Links & Acknowledgments
Bishop's Opening PGN File

The Calabrese Countergambit is very similar to the Latvian Countergambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f5), also known as the Greco Counter Gambit, and can transpose to well-known territory if White responds 3.Nf3 (leading to lines too complex to analyze here at length, though this may well be among White's best options). Black's gambit should not be underestimated and White must play actively to secure any advantage against it. Long ago Jaenisch published an extensive analysis of 3.d3 which is still widely considered the simplest response. But I am not so sure I trust it anymore. Better may be the more active 3.Nc3, which combines in some ways the best of both the 3.Nf3 and 3.d3 lines, or the romantic 3.f4! (my current recommendation) which creates a very sharp symmetry that should favor White. There is still a lot to discover here, and the analysis does much to bear out the classical ideas of Philidor and his followers.

C1) 3.Bxg8?! Rxg8
The capture of the Knight by the Bishop is anti-positional, surrendering a strongly developed piece for one on its original square. But recent suggestions by James Grist show that the line may be playable for White.

C1a) 4.Qh5+? g6 5.Qxh7 Rg7 (=+ Greco) 6.Qh8 Qg5! (6....fxe5!? =+; 6....d6?! 7.d4! f4?! 8.g3!? Qe7?! 9.dxe5 dxe5 10.gxf4 exf4 11.Nc3 Bf5! 12.f3 Nc6?! [12....Rh7! =+] 13.Nd5! += Graeffe--Reinhardt, 1990) 7.Qh3 fxe4 (Better 7....Nc6!) 8.Nc3 Qf5 9.Qe3 Rf7 10.Nh3 d5!? 11.Nxd5 Nc6 12.c3 (12.Ng5!? Nd5!) 12....Be6 13.c4 Nd4 14.Qc3 Qg4 15.O-O Ne2+ 0-1 NN--Greco, Italy 1620.

C1b) 4.exf5?! d5 (4....Qf6!?; 4....Nf6!? 4.Nf3 [4.g4 d5 5.Bb3 Bc5 6.d3 h5 7.g5 Ng4 8.Nh3 Bxf5 9.f3 O-O 10.Nc3 c6 11.Qe2 Na6 12.a3 Nc7 13.Nd1 Qd6 14.Nhf2 Nxf2 15.Nxf2 Ne6 16.h4 Nd4 17.Qd1 e4 18.dxe4 Qg3 19.Qd3 Bxe4 20.fxe4 Qxf2+ 21.Kd1 Nxb3 22.Qxb3 Rf3 23.Qa4 Raf8 24.exd5 Re3 0-1 NN--Anderssen, Rotterdam 1861] 4....e4 5.Ne5 d5 6.Bb3 Bxf5 7. d3 Bd6 8.Bf4 Qe7 9.d4 c5 10.c3 O-O 11.O-O Nc6 12.Nxc6 bxc6 13.Bxd6 Qxd6 14.h3 Rab8 15.dxc5 Qxc5 16.Nd2 a5 17.a4 e3 18.fxe3 Qxe3+ 19.Rf2 Ne4 20.Nxe4 Bxe4 21.Qf1 Rxb3 0-1 Hermann--Steinitz, The Hague 1873) 5.Qh5+ g6 6.fxg6 Rxg6 7.Ne2 (7.Qxh7 Qf6 8.Qxc7?! Nc6 9.Qh7 Nd4 [9....Rxg2 10.Qh5+ Kd8 -+] 10.Kd1 Bg4+ 11.f3 Nxf3 12.gxf3 Bxf3+ 13.Ke1 Bxh1 14.Ne2 Bg2 15.d4 O-O-O 16.dxe5 Qf1+ 17.Kd2 Bh6+ 18.Kc3 Rc6+ 19.Kb3 Qxe2 20.Bxh6 Qc4+ 21.Ka3 Ra6+ 0-1 Pentz--Maroczy, Nagyteteny 1901) 7....Nc6 8.O-O Bg4 9.Qh7 Rh6 10.Qd3 e4 11.Qe3 Qh4 12.h3 Be2 13.Qe2 Nd4 14.Qd1 (14.Qg4 Qg4 15.hg4 Ne2#) 14....Nf3+ 15.Kh1 Qh3+! 16.gh3 Rh3+ 17.Kg2 Rh2+ 18.Kg3 Bd6+ 19.Kg4 Rh4+ 20.Kf5 Rh5+ 21.Kg6 (21.Kf6 Be7+ 22.Ke6 Re5#; 21.Kg4 Rg5+ 22.Kh3 O-O-O! -+) 21....Rg5+ 22.Kh6 Bf8+ 23.Kh7 Kf7 24.Rh1 Bg7! 0-1 Fisher--Steinitz, Liverpool 1872.

C1c) 4.Nc3! (James Grist sent me some analysis of this move, showing that it makes 3.Bxg8 a playable alternative for White. Also playable might be 4.d3 which likely transposes to the main line below after 4....Nc6 5.Nc3 d6) 4....d6 (Better, in Grist's view, is 4....Nc6! to prevent d4, which should transpose to the main line below. A very interesting try, though, is 4....Qg5!? which Grist thinks should be answered aggressively with 5.Nf3! Qxg2 6.Rg1 Qh3 7.Rg3 Qh5 8.Rg5 Qh3 9.Nd5 Na6 and now White should not win the exchange with 10.Nf6+? gxf6 11.Rxg8 fxe4 =+, but has a number of possibilities, including 10.d3 [Grist +=], 10.Qe2, or 10.exf5, all of which look quite promising.) 5.d3 (Better in this move order is 5.d4! exd4 6.Qxd4 Nc6 7.Qc4 Rh8 8.Nd5 Be7 9.Nf3 +=) 5....Nc6 6.f4?! (This move turned out badly. Grist suggests 6.Qh5+ g6 7.Qxh7 Rg7 8.Qh6 [8.Qh8 Nd4 9.Kd1 f4 =+] 8....f4 9.Bd2 Bg4!? 10.f3 Be6 11.g4 which is playable for White who keeps his extra pawn in a relatively closed position) 6...Be6 7.Be3 g6 8.Qe2 exf4 9.Bxf4 Nd4 10.Qf2 Bg7 11.Nf3 c5!? 12.Be3?! (12.Ng5, 12.O-O, or 12.exf5 =/+=) 12....Qb6! =+ 13.Bxd4 cxd4 14.Nd1?! (14.Nd5 =+) 14....fxe4 15.dxe4 Qa5+ 16.Qd2 Qc5 17.O-O d3+ 18.Ne3 dxc2 19.Rac1 Bh6 20.Rfe1?! Rc8 21.Kh1 Kd7 22.b3 Rgf8 23.Rxc2 Bxe3 24.Rxc5 Bxd2 25.Rxc8 Rxc8 26.Nxd2 Rc2 27.Nf3 Rxa2 28.Nd4 Rb2 29.h3 Bxb3 30.e5 dxe5 31.Rxe5 a6 32.Re3 Bd5 33.Rg3 b5 34.Rg5 Kd6 35.h4 Rb4 36.h5 Rxd4 37.hxg6 hxg6 38.Rxg6+ Be6 39.g3 Rg4 40.Rf6 Rxg3 41.Rf8 b4 42.Ra8 Ra3 43.Rb8 a5 44.Rb6+ Ke5 45.Kg2 b3 46.Kf1 Ra2 47.Ke1 0-1 Jacquemin--Baldes, Paris 1993.

C2) 3.exf5 Nf6 4. d4 exd4 5.Qxd4 d5 6.Bd3 Nc6 (6....c5!? Leach) 7. Qe3+ Kf7 8.Ne2 Bb4+ 9.c3 Re8 10.Qg3 Bd6 =+ Leach

C3) 3.Qh5+ g6 4.Qe2 fxe4 (4....Nc6?! 5.exf5 +=) 5.Qxe4 Nc6 =

C4) 3.d4 (Estrinís suggestion) 3....exd4 (3....Qf6!? Leach)

C4a) 4.Nf3 (4.exf5 Nf6 =; 4.e5 d5 =; 4.c3 Nf6 5.exf5 d5 6.Bd3 =; 5.e5 d5! =) 4....fxe4!? (4....d6! transposes to C5) 5.Ne5 d5!? (5....Qf6) 6.Qh5+ g6 7.Nxg6 hxg6 8.Qxh8 Be6 and Black has compensation for the exchange.

C4b) 4.Bxg8! Rxg8 5.Qxd4 fxe4 6.Qd5 Rh8 7.Nc3 (7.Qh5+!? g6 8.Qe5+ Kf7 9.Bg5 Qe8 10.Qf4+ +=) 7....d6 8.Bg5 Qd7 9.O-O-O Qf5 10.Qxe4+?! (10.Rd4! +=) 10....Qxe4 11.Nxe4 h6 = Hankipohja--Pyhaelae, Finland Team Ch. 1988

C5) 3.d3 Nf6
Weaker is 3....Bc5? 4.Bxg8! [This move is generally strong once the Black Bishop has moved from f8] 4....Rxg8 5.Qh5+ Kf8 6.Nf3 Qf6 [6....d6!? ±] 7.Ng5! Rh8 8.Nxh7+ Rxh7 9.Qxh7 fxe4 10.O-O d5 11.Nc3 [11.Qh8+! +-] 11....Be6 12.Qh8+ Ke7 13.dxe4 c6 14.exd5 cxd5 15.Be3 Bd6 [15....d4 16.Ne4 Leach] 16.Rad1 Qf7 17.b4! Bxb4? 18.Ne4 Qf8 19.Qh4+ Kd7 20.f4 Nc6 21.fxe5 Qh8 22.Qg3 1-0 Paulsen--Chevalier St. Bon, London 1862

C5a) 4.f4
This move was recommended by Jaenisch long ago, but it is not as easy for White as 4.Nf3. A better way to implement these ideas is by 3.f4!

C5a1) 4.... d6 (4....exf4 5.Bxf4 fxe4 6.dxe4 Qe7 7.e5 d6 8.Qe2 dxe5 9.Bxe5 c6 10.Nf3 += Staunton; 4....fxe4 5.dxe4 Nc6 6.Nc3 Bc5 7.Nf3 Na5 8.Bd3 O-O 9.fxe5 Ng4 10.Qe2 += Harding; 4....d5!? 5.exd5 e4!? Bilguer) 5.Nf3 fxe4 (5....exf4 6.O-O fxe4 7.dxe4; 5....Nc6!? was recommended by Keres) 6.dxe4 Bg4 7.fxe5 Bxf3 8.Qxf3 dxe5 9.Qb3 Qe7 (9....Qc8 10.Bg5 Bc5 11.Bf7+ += Jaenisch) 10.O-O c6 ± 11.a4 h6 12.Be3 b6 13.Nc3 Nbd7 14.Rad1 O-O-O 15.Ba6+ Kc7 16.a5 Nc5 17.axb6+ axb6 18.Na4 Nxa4 19.Qxa4 Nd7 20.Be2 1-0 Schuld--Koetsheid, Correspondence 1902.

C5a2) 4....Nc6! 5.Nf3 (5.Nc3 Bb4 =) 5....fxe4!? (Better may be 5....exf4! 6.Qe2 [6.e5 d5!] 6....fxe4 7.dxe4 Ng4 8.Bxf4 Qf6 unclear) 6.dxe4?! (Better 6.Nxe5! d5 7.Bb5 Qd6 [7....Bd7 8.Bxc6 Bxc6 9.dxe4 Bc5!? unclear] 8.Nc3 exd3 9.cxd3 Bd7 10.O-O +=/= and White still has a very slight edge) 6....Nxe4 7.fxe5 Nxe5! 8.Bd5 (8.Nxe5 Qh4+ 9.g3 Nxg3 10.hxg3 Qxh1+ =+) 8....Nxf3+ 9.Qxf3 Nf6 10.Bg5 c6 11.Bb3 Qa5+ 12.Bd2 Qe5+ 13.Kd1 Qh5!? (After the exchange of Queens White has little hope of compensation for the pawn, of course, but Black had better winning chances after 13....d5! 14.Re1 Ne4 with the threat of 15....Bg4!) 14.Re1+ Kd8 =+ 15.Qxh5 Nxh5 16.Bg5+ Nf6 17.Nd2 d5 18.Nf3 Bd6 19.c4 dxc4 20.Bxc4 Re8 21.Rxe8+ Kxe8 22.Bd3 h6 23.Bxf6 gxf6 24.Kc2 Kf7 25.Re1 Be6 26.g3 Re8 27.Re4 Be5 28.Nh4 Rd8 29.b3 c5 30.Re2 a6 31.Ng6 Bc7 32.Nh4 Be5 33.Ng6 Bc7 34.Nh4 Be5 35.Ng6 1/2-1/2 Emms-Lyell, Southampton 1986.

C5b) 4.Nf3!
Emms recommends White try to play the typical Black formation of the King's Gambit Declined with an extra tempo. Black's inability to castle easily should be a big problem for him here, and this is therefore the easiest line for White to play over the board, though I am not sure it yields any real advantage.

C5b1) 4...d5?! 5.exd5 Bd6 (in the game Tapani--Panu, Raissio 1993, Black tried 5....e4 6.dxe4 fxe4 7.Ng5 h6 when, instead of 8.Ne6 Bxe6 9.dxe6 Qxd1+ 10.Kxd1 Bc5 11.Ke2 Nc6 +=, White could have played 8.Nxe4! Qe7 9.O-O! +-) 6.O-O O-O 7.Nc3 a6 8.a4 h6 (8....e4!? 9.dxe4 fxe4 10.Ng5 ±) and now White should have played 9.Re1 Re8 10.Nd2! Qe7 11.Qf3 ± in Lenhof--Steinitz, Vienna 1859 which continued instead 9.d4!? e4 10.Ne5 Nbd7 11.Nxd7?! (11.f4! +=) 11....Bxd7 12.f3 Qe8 13.fxe4 fxe4 14.Bf4 Qg6 15.Bxd6 cxd6 16.Qe2 Rae8 17.Rf4?! Re7?! (17....e3! =+) 18.Re1 Rfe8 19.Qf2 Nh5 20.Rh4 Rf7 21.Qd2 Nf6 22.h3 Qg5 23.Qf4 Nh7 24.Qxg5 Nxg5 25.Rf1 Rfe7 26.Rhf4 e3 27.Re1 Bxh3 28.Bd3 Bd7 29.b3 Nh7 30.Nd1 Nf6 31.c4 Ng4 32.Rf3 Nf2 33.Bg6 Nxd1 34.Bxe8 Rxe8 35.Rxd1 Bg4 36.Re1 Bxf3 37.gxf3 Kf7 38.c5 dxc5 39.dxc5 Re5 40.c6 bxc6 41.dxc6 Ke6 42.Kf1 e2+ 43.Rxe2 Rxe2 44.Kxe2 a5 45.f4 g6 0-1.

C5b2) 4....Nc6 5.O-O (5.Ng5?! d5! 6.exd5 Nxd5 7.O-O Be7 was unclear in a game between Bilguer--von der Lasa) 5....Bc5 (perhaps better 5....Qe7!? but not 5....fxe4 6.dxe4 Nxe4? 7.Nxe5! Nxe5 8.Qh5+! Ng6 9.Re1 ±) 6.Nc3 d6 7.Bg5 or 7.Na4 +=.

C5b4) 4....c6! 5.Qe2! (5.Nxe5? Qa5+ -+; 5.Nc3 Bb4! [5....b5!?] 6.Bg5 = Sorensen--From, Copenhagen 1870 after 6....d5!; 5.O-O d5 6.exd5 cxd5 7.Bb5+ Bd7 8.Bxd7+ Nxd7 9.Re1 e4! =) 5....Be7 6.O-O d5! 7.exd5 e4! 8.Nd4 cxd5 9.Bb5+ Kf7 += with a complex struggle underway.


C6) 3.Nc3
This may be White's safest option, with still relatively little theory to worry about! I think I would recommend this for play over the board.

C6a) 3....d6 4.Nf3 fxe4 5.Nxe5 Nh6 6.Qh5+ g6 7.Nxg6 Bg4 8.Qb5+ c6 9.Qxb7 hxg6 10.Qxa8 Rh7 11.Nxe4 d5 12.Bxd5 cxd5 13.Qxd5! ± Rd7 14.Qb5 a6 15.Qa4 Kf7 16.d3 Rd4 17.Qb3+ Kg7 18.Be3 Nf5 19.h3 Bb4+ 20.Kf1 Nxe3+ 21.fxe3 Qf8+ 22.Kg1 Rxe4 23.hxg4 Rxe3 24.Rf1 Re1 25.Rxe1 Bc5+ 26.d4 Bxd4+ 27.Re3 Nc6 28.Qb7+ Ne7 29.Rh3 +- Hommeles--Zagema, Netherlands 1995.

C6b) 3....Nf6 4.d3 Bb4 5.Bd2 (5.Nf3 fxe4 6.dxe4 Bxc3+ 7.bxc3 d6 8.O-O Qe7 9.Nh4!? Nc6 10.a4 Be6 11.Nf5 Bxf5 12.exf5 g6 13.Rb1!? gxf5 14.Bg5 was unclear in Sunder--Pirrot, Giessen/Saarbrucken 1986) 5....c6 (5....Qe7 6.Nge2 c6 7.O-O Na6 8.Kh1 b5 9.Bb3 fxe4 10.Nxe4 Bxd2 11.Qxd2 d5 12.Nxf6+ gxf6 13.f4 Rg8 14.Ng3 Bg4 15.Rae1 O-O-O 16.fxe5 fxe5 17.Qc3 Kb7 18.Qxe5 Qc5 19.Rf7+ Bd7 20.d4 Qb6 21.Qd6 Kc8 22.c3 Nc7 23.Ree7 Rg6 24.Qe5 Ne6 25.Nf5 Qc7 26.Nd6+ Kb8 27.Bc2 Rg5 28.Bf5 Nf8 29.Qf6 Rg8 30.h3 c5 31.dxc5 Qxc5 32.Bxd7 Rg6 33.Rxf8 1-0 Coposciutti--Bianca, Rome 1990) 6.f4 exf4 7.e5 Ng4 8.Bxf4 Qa5 9.Nf3 Qc5 10.Qd2 a5 11.a3 Bxc3 12.bxc3 Na6 13.h3 b5 14.Ba2 Nh6 15.Be3 Qf8 16.Nd4 Ng8 17.O-O g6 18.e6 dxe6 19.Bxe6 Nc5 20.Bxc8 Rxc8 21.Rae1 Kd7 22.Nxf5 gxf5 23.Bd4 Qh6 24.Qf2 1-0 Cimmino--Neri, Correspondence 1991-1992.

C7) 3.Nf3
This transposes to a much analyzed line in the Latvian Counter-Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 f5 3.Bc4!?), where best is probably 3....d6! leading to one of Black's best lines in the Philidor Countergambit (1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 f5 4.Bc4) if White plays the aggressive 4.d4. The latest analysis by Tony Kosten, published in The Latvian Gambit Lives! and Winning with the Philidor, and James West, published in two editions of The Philidor Countergambit, suggests that these lines are quite playable for Black. I present some of the main lines to give you a sense of the play here and urge you to purchase these excellent books if you wish more fully to understand this extremely complex variation. I will also eventually post a small website devoted to what I see as White's best ideas in this line, complete with the seven surviving games from the Dimock Theme Tournament of October 1921 devoted to the Greco Counter Gambit with Bc4. For now, here are links to those Dimock games:

C7a) 3....b5 (Strautins) 4.Bxg8! Rxg8 5.d4 (5.exf5 e4 6.Nd4 Qg5 7.O-O a6 8.d3 += Montivay-Monsalvo, Correspondence 1970) 5....fxe4 6.Bg5! Be7 7.Nxe5! g6 8.Bxe7 Qxe7 9.Qe2 c6 10.Nd2 += Kozlov-Franco, Correspondence 1974.

C7b) 3....fxe4 4.Nxe5

C7b1) 4....Qg5?! (This is rightly called the Poisoned Pawn Variation, since Black probably loses if White plays precisely) 5.d4! Qxg2 6.Qh5+ g6 7.Bf7+ Kd8 (7....Ke7 8.Bg5+! Nf6 9.Qh4 Qxh1+ 10.Kd2! e3+ 11.Ke2! Bg7 12.Nc3 Qg2 13.Ne4! +- Kozlov-Svendsen, Correspondence 1991) 8.Bxg6! Qxh1+ 9.Ke2 c6 (9....Qxc1 10.Nf7+ Ke8 11.Nxh8+ hxg6 12.Qxg6+ Kd8 13.Nf7+ is also advantageous for White) 10.Nc3! e3! (10....Nf6 11.Qh4 [11.Qg5! Purins-Eglitis, Correspondence 1974] 11....Be7 12.Bg5! Qxa8 13.Bxf6 Bxf6 14.Qxf6+ Kc7 15.Nc4!! b6 16.Qe5+ d6?! 17.Nb5+!! 1-0 Purins--Englitis, Correspondence 1971; 10....Kc7 11.Bf4 hxg6 12.Qxh8 Qxa1 13.Qxg8 d6 14.Qxf8 +- Gubats-Vitomskis, Correspondence 1970) 11.Nf7+ Kc7 12.Qg5 Be7 13.Qg3+ d6 14.Be4 Bg4+ 15.Qxg4 Nf6 16.Qe6! +- Falkowski-Leisebein, Correspondence 1988.

C7b2) 4....Nf6!? (Blackburne) 5.Nf7! (5.Bf7+ Ke7 6.Bb3 d5 7.d4 c5 8.Bg5 Nc6 9.Qh5 Qe8 10.Qh4 cxd4 11.Bxd5 Nxe5 12.Qxe4 Kd6
13.Bxf6 gxf6 14.f4 Bf5 15.fxe5+ Qxe5 16.Qxe5+ fxe5 17.Bb3 Bh6 18.Na3 Kc5 19.O-O Rhf8 20.Rad1 Be3+ 21.Kh1 b5 22.Nb1 Bg4 23.Rde1 Be2 24.Rxf8 Rxf8 25.h3 Rf2 26.c3 d3 27.Bd1 e4 28.b4 Kd6 29.Na3 a6 30.c4 Kc6 31.cxb5 axb5 32.Nb1 Bd4 33.Nd2 Bc3 34.Kg1 Bxd2 35.Kxf2 e3 0-1 Gamman-Blackburne, London Match 1869) 5....Qe7 6.Nxh8 d5 7.Be2 (7.Bxd5?! Bg4! 8.Bxb7 Qe5 9.Nc3 Bxd1 10.Nxd1 Nd5 11.Bxa8 c6 unclear; 7.Bb5+!? c6 8.Be2 +=)

C7b2a) 8.Bh5+?! g6 9.Nxg6 hxg6 10.Bxg6+ Kd8 11.Bh5 Ne5 12.Be2 unclear

C7b2b) 8.d4 exd3 9.cxd3 Bg4?! (9....Bf5 Kosten) 10.Nc3 O-O-O 11.O-O Be6 12.Bf4?! d4 13.Nb5 Nd5 14.Bg3 a6 15.Na3 Qd7 16.Nc4 Be7 17.Ng6 hxg6 18.a3 Bf6 19.Bf3 g5 20.b4 Nc3 21.Qc2 Bxc4 22.dxc4 d3 = 23.Qd2 Nd4 24.Bd1 Nde2+ 25.Kh1 Ne4 26.Qa2 Bxa1 27.Qxa1 Qf5 28.Ba4 Rh8 29.Qe1 N4xg3+ 30.fxg3 Rxh2+ 31.Kxh2 Qh7+ 0-1 Gamman-Blackburne, London Match 1869.

C7b2c) 8.O-O Bf5 9.d4 O-O-O 10.c3 Qe6 11.Bf4 Be7 12.b4 Rxh8 13.a4 g5!? += Keast-Bormann, Correspondence 1974.

C5b2d) 8.d3 Bf5 9.dxe4 +=

C7b3) 4....d5 (Svedenborg) 5.Qh5+ g6 6.Nxg6

C7b3a) 6....Nf6 7.Qe5+ Be7 8.Bb5+ c6 9.Nxe7 Qxe7 10.Qxe7+ Kxe7 11.Be2 Rg8 12.g3 c5 13.d3 exd3 14.Bxd3 c4 15.Be2 Nc6 16.c3 Bf5 17.Be3 Rae8 18.O-O Kd7 19.Rd1 Bg4 20.Bxg4+ Rxg4 21.Nd2 ± Larsen-Nilsson, Correspondence 1991.

C7b3b) 6....hxg6

C7b3b1) 7.Qxg6+ Kd7 8.Bxd5 Nf6 9.Nc3 Qe7

C7b3b1a) 10.b3 Rh6 11.Qf7 Qxf7 12.Bxf7 Nc6 13.Bb2 Bc5 14.h3 Bd4 15.O-O-O Bxf2 16.g4 Bh4 17.Rdf1 Ke7 18.Bc4 Be6 -+ Oren-Heap, Correspondence 1991.

C7b3b1b) 10.d3 exd3+ 11.Be3 c6 12.Bb3 Bh6 13.O-O-O Bxe3+ 14.fxe3 b6 15.Rxd3+ Kc7 16.e4 Nbd7 17.Rf3 Ba6 18.Rf5 Raf8 19.Qg3+ Kb7 20.Re1 Nc5 21.e5 Nxb3+ 22.axb3 Nd7 23.Rxf8 Rxf8 24.Kb1 Rf1 25.Rxf1 Bxf1 26.Qf3 Ba6 27.Qf5 Nxe5 -+ Jakobsson-McDonald, Correspondence 1995.

C7b3b2) 7.Qxh8 Kf7 8.Qd4 Be6 9.Be2 Nc6 10.Qe3 Bh6 11.f4 d4 12.Qf2 Nf6 13.O-O d3 14.cxd3 exd3 15.Bd1 Nd4 16.Nc3 Bf8 17.Kh1 Bc5 18.Na4 Be7 19.b3 Ng4 20.Bxg4 Bxg4 21.Bb2 ± Alderden-Goedhart, Correspondence 1984, but Black can likely improve here according to Kosten.

C7c) 3....d6!
Transposing to Philidor's original vision of his defense is much better than playing the Latvian Gambit. According to recent practice and analysis, Black does quite well.

C7c1) 4.d3

C7c1a) 4....Nc6?!

C7c1a1) 5.O-O Nf6 6.Ng5 d5 7.exd5 Nxd5 8.Nc3 Nce7 9.Qf3 c6 10.Nce4 fxe4 11.Qf7+ Kd7 12.Qe6+ Kc7 13.Qxe5+ Qd6 14.Qxd6+ Kxd6 15.Nf7+ Ke6 16.Nxh8 exd3 17.cxd3 Kf6 18.b4 Be6 19.Re1 Bg8 20.Bb2+ Kg5 21.Re5+ Kh6 22.Bc1+ g5 23.Rxg5 1-0 Morphy--Rousseau, New Orleans 1849.

C7c1a2) 5.a3!? Nf6 6.Nc3 h6 7.Nh4!? g5 8.Nxf5 Bxf5 9.exf5 Nd4 10.Ne4 g4 11.h3 Qe7 12.c3 Nxf5 13.hxg4 Nxe4 14.dxe4 Nh4 15.g3 Ng6 16.g5 O-O-O 17.Qg4+ Kb8 18.gxh6 +- Ochoa De Echaguen--Barrenechea, Seville 1994.

C7c1b) 4....Nf6!? (Kosten) 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bxf6 Qxf6 7.c3 Nc6 8.b4 Be7 9.Nbd2 Be6 10.Qb3 Nd8 11.h3 O-O 12.O-O-O?! a5 13.b5 a4 14.Bxe6 Nxe6 =+ Kosten.

C7c1c) 4....c6! 5.O-O f4! 6.d4 Qf6 7.dxe5 dxe5 8.Nc3 Bg4 with the idea of Nd7 and O-O-O = West.

C7c2) 4.d4

C7c2a) 4....fxe4? 5.Nxe5! dxe5 6.Qh5+ Kd7 7.Qf5+ Kc6 8.Qxe4+ (8.Qxe5 is also winning) 8....Kb6 9.Be3 exd4 10.Nc3 Nf6 11.Na4+ Ka5 12.Qe5+ c5 13.Bd2+ Kxa4 14.a3 1-0 Ginzburg-Schuster, Buenos Aires 1992..

C7c2b) 4....Nc6!? 5.dxe5 dxe5 6.Qxd8+ Nxd8 = West

C7c2c) 4....exd4! 5.Ng5 (5.Nxd4 fxe4 6.Qh5+ g6 7.Qd5 Qe7 8.Bg5 Nf6 = Melchor-Svendsen, Correspondence 1985) 5....Nh6 6.O-O (6.Nxh7?! Ng4! 7.Nxf8 Kxf8 =+ Nurmi-Mestel, Tjentishe 1975, and Sorokin-Maliutin, Moscow 1991)

C7c2c1) 6....Nc6?! 7.exf5! (7.Re1 f4! 8.Bxf4 Qf6 9.Qd2 Be7! 10.Na3 Ne5 11.Be2 O-O 12.g3 Ng6 =+ Kosten) 7....Bxf5 8.Re1+ Kd7 9.Be6+! (9.c3 Qf6 10.Qb3 Be7 11.Ne6 Rab8 12.cxd4 Qh4 13.Ng7 Nxd4 14.Nf5 Nhxf5 15.Be6+ Kd8 =+ Adorjan-Mestel, Moscow 1977) 9....Bxe6 10.Nxe6 Qh4 11.Bxh6 gxh6 12.Qf3 Be7 13.Qf5 Ne5 14.Nxd4+ ± Zemitis-Svendsen, Correspondence 1998.

C7c2c2) 6....f4! 7.Bxf4 Qf6 8.Qh5+ g6 9.Qh4 Nc6 10.Nd2 Bd7 11.Ndf3 O-O-O 12.Ne6 Qxh4 13.Nxh4 Bxe6 14.Bxe6+ Kb8 15.Bg5 Be7 16.Bxh6 Bxh4 17.g3 Bf6 = 18.a3 d3! 19.c3 Rhe8 20.Bd5 Ne5 21.Bf4 c6 22.Bb3 g5 23.Bxe5 Rxe5 24.Bc4 Rxe4 25.Bxd3 Re7 26.Rae1 Rde8 27.Rxe7 Rxe7 28.f4 gxf4 29.Rxf4 Bg5 1/2-1/2 Reyna Glez-Perez, Correspondence 1994

C8) 3.f4!
This may be White's theoretically best method of obtaining an advantage, but it can lead to great complications. White is up a tempo, after all, and therefore should have the edge in symmetrical lines. Black's best therefore is to break symmetry with 3....exf4, transposing to the Lopez Counter Gambit of the Bishop's Gambit (1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 3.Bc4 f5!?), a line which has not been extensively examined for nearly 100 years, though it received some scrutiny from Estrin and Glazkov in 1982. This is fascinating territory for analysis and research and might therefore be preferred by correspondence players.

C8a) 3....Nc6 4.exf5! Nf6 5.fxe5 Nxe5 6.Be2 +=

C8b) 3....Nf6 4.fxe5 Nxe4 5.d3! (5.Nf3 += Emms, e.g.: 5....d5 6.exd6 Nxd6 7.Be2) 5....d5 (5....Qh4+?! 6.g3 Nxg3 7.Nf3 Qh3 8.Rg1 Nh5 9.Bf7+ Ke7 10.Nc3 ±) 6.Bb5+ c6 7.dxe4 Qh4+ 8.Kf1 Bc5 (8....fxe4 9.g3 Qe7 10.Be2 Qxe5 11.Be3 ±; 8....cxb5 9.exd5 ±) 9.Qe1 +=

C8c) 3....Bc5 4.Bxg8 Bxg1 5.exf5 Qh4+ 6.g3 Qh3 7.Qe2 Rxg8 8.Rxg1 Qxf5 9.d4 Nc6 10.g4 Qg6 11.d5 Nb4 12.Na3 Nxd5 13.Qxe5++=

C8d) 3....exf4!

C8d1) 4.Nh3?! fxe4 6.Bxg8 Rxg8 7.Nc3 Bc5 8.Ncxe4 Bxf2+ 9.Nxf2 d6 10.O-O g5 =+ Anderssen-Mayet, Berlin 1855.

C8d2) 4.d3?! Qh4+ 5. Kf1 fxe4 6. dxe4 Bc5! =+ 7. Qf3 Nh6 8. Bxf4 Rf8 9. g3 Qg4 10. Kg2 g5 11. Qxg4 Nxg4 12. Bxg5 Rf2+ 13. Kh3 d5 14. Bxd5 Ne3+ 15. Kh4 Nd7 16. b4 Ng2+ 17. Kh5 Bf8 18. Nh3 Nf6+ 19. Bxf6 Rxf6 20. Nf4 Nxf4+ 21. gxf4 Rh6+ 22. Kg5 Rg6+ 23. Kh5 Bg4+ 24. Kh4 Bf3 25. Rg1 Rxg1 26. Nd2 Be7+ 27. Kh3 Bg4# 0-1 Mayet-Neumann, Berlin 1865.

C8d3) 4.Qh5+ g6 5.Qe2 fxe4 6.Qxe4+ Be7 7.Qd5 Nh6 8.Qe5 Rf8 9.Qg7 Bh4+ =+ Schulten-Suhle, Berlin 1864.

C8d4) 4.exf5 Nf6 (4....Qh4+! 5.Kf1 f3! 6.d4 gxg2+ 7.Kxg2 Nf6 8.Qe2+ Kd8 9.Be3 Nc6 10.c3 d5 11.Bd3 Bd6 12.Nd2 Re8 13.Nf1 Bf4 14.Nf3 Qg4+ =+ analysis by S. A. Sorensen in Nordischen Schachzeitung 1873, cited by Korchnoi) 5.Nc3 Qe7+ 6.Qe2 Nc6 7.Nf3 Nb4 = 8.Bb3 c6 9.d3 d5 10.Nd4 f3 11.gxf3 Qxe2+ 12.Ncxe2 Kf7 13.Bg5 Bd6 14.Kd2 Bd7 15.Rag1 Rhe8 16.Bf4 Bf8 17.Rg2 c5 18.a3 Na6 19.Ne6 Bxe6 20.fxe6+ Rxe6 21.Nc3 Rd8 22.Kc1 Rc6 23.Rd1 Be7 24.Be5 c4 25.Ba2 Nc7 26.Rgd2 Ke8 27.Bxc7 Rxc7 28.dxc4 dxc4 29.Rxd8+ Bxd8 30.Nb5 Rd7 31.Bxc4 Bb6 32.Re1+ Kf8 33.Be6 Rd8 34.c4 Rd3 35.f4 a6 36.Nc3 Be3+ 37.Kb1 Bxf4 38.Bc8 Rd8 39.Bxb7 Rb8 40.Bxa6 Bd2 41.Rc1 Bxc1 42.Kxc1 g5 43.c5 Ke7 44.b4 h5 45.Nb5 Nd5 46.Nd4 Kf6 47.Kd2 g4 48.Bc4 Ne7 49.b5 Ke5 50.Kc3 h4 51.a4 Nd5+ 52.Bxd5 Kxd5 53.c6 Rc8 54.Kd3 g3 55.hxg3 hxg3 56.Nf5 Rg8 57.c7 g2 58.Ne3+ Kd6 1/2-1/2 Murey-Tatai, Beer Sheva 1978.

C8d5) 4.Nc3 Qh4+ (On 4....d5 5.Nxd5! and not 5.Bxd5?! in Anderssen-Eichborn, Breslau 1854; 4....Nf6 5.d3 fxe4 6. dxe4 Bb4 7. Qe2 Bxc3+ 8. bxc3 d6 9. Bxf4 Bg4 10. Nf3 Qe7 11. O-O += Cauveren-Geus, Correspondence 1904, or 5....c6 6.Bxf4 d5 7.exd5 cxd5 8.Bb3 Bb4 9.Qe2+ Kf7 10.Nf3 += Westerinen--Kiltti, Jyvaskyla 1994) 5.Kf1

C8d5a) 5....f3!? 6.d3 fxg2+ 7.Kxg2 Bc5 8.Nh3 Nf6 9.Bg5 Qd4 10.Nc3 Be7 11.Re1 Kd8 12.Qf3 += Nc6 13.Bd5 d6 14.Bxc6 bxc6 15.Nf4 Qc5 16.Ne6+ Bxe6 17.Rxe6 Kd7 18.Rae1 Bd8 19.R6e2 Rf8 20.Bxf6 gxf6 21.Qg4 d5 22.d4 Qd6 23.Na4 Kc8 24.Nc5 Rf7 25.Re8 Rb8 26.Qg8 Rd7 27.Nxd7 Qxd7 28.Rxd8+ 1-0 Kopaev-Kamishov, Leningrad 1938.

C8d5b) 5....Nf6 6.Nf3 Qh5 7.d3 += Anderssen-Mayet, Berlin 1855.

C8d5c) 5....fxe4 6.Nxe4

C8d5c1) 6....Nf6 7.Nf3 Qh6 (7....Qh5 8.Nxf6+ gxf6 9.d4 += Emms) 8.Qe2!? += Chigorin-Gelvig, Correspondence 1882

C8d5c2) 6....Be7! 7.d4 Nh6 8.Nf3 Qh5 9.Bxf4 d5 10.Ng3 Qf7 11.Bb5+ c6 12.Bxh6 cxb5 = 13.Be3 O-O 14.Kg1 Bg4 15.Qd2 Bxf3 16.Rf1 Qg6 17.Rxf3 Nd7 18.Kf2 Rac8 19.Rc1 Bd6 20.Qd3 Bxg3+ 21.hxg3 Qxd3 22.cxd3 Rxc1 23.Rxf8+ Kxf8 24.Bxc1 Kf7 25.Bf4 Ke6 26.Kf3 Kf5 27.g4+ Ke6 28.Bc7 Nf8 29.Be5 Kf7 30.Bf4 Ne6 31.Be3 Nd8 32.Ke2 Nc6 33.a3 a5 34.b3 b4 35.a4 Ke6 36.Bf2 Na7 37.Bg3 b5 38.axb5 Nxb5 39.Be5 g6 40.Ke3 Nc3 41.Kd2 Kd7 42.Bf4 Kc6 43.Kc2 Nb5 44.Be3 Na7 45.Kb2 Kb5 46.g5 Nc6 47.g4 a4 48.bxa4+ Kxa4 49.Bf2 b3 50.Be3 Nb4 51.Kc3 Nc2 52.Bc1 Ne1 53.Kd2 Nf3+ 54.Ke3 Nxg5 55.Kf4 Nf7 56.g5 Kb5 0-1 Maroczy-Marco, Vienna 1903.

C8d6) 4.Qe2!
Recommended by Estrin and Glazkov as the "only" way of obtaining an advantage. But an improvement will need to be found on Glazkov's analysis, which Keres shows leads only to equality.

C8d6a) 4....fxe4? 5.Qh5+! g6 6.Qe5+ Qe7 7.Qxh8 Nf6 was successful in Pillsbury-Marshall, Vienna 1903 and Gohle-Neumann, Berlin 1866, but it should have lost, according to Neumann's analysis: 8.b3! d5 9.Ba3 c5 10.Bxc5 Qxc5 11.Qxf6 dxc4 12.Qxf4 (± Neumann) 12....Bf5 13.Nc3 cxb3 14.axb3 Nc6 15.g4 Nd4 16.Ra4 Ne6 17.Qg3 Bd6 18.Qg2 Nf4 19.Qf1 1-0 Dennis-Schuster, Correspondence 1992.

C8d6b) 4....Nf6 5.e5 Ne4 6.Nf3 Be7 (6....Nc6 7.d3 Ng5 8.Bxf4 Nxf3+ 9.Qxf3 Nd4 10.Qf2 Ne6 11.Be3 d5 12.exd6 Bxd6 13.Qxf5 Qh4+ 14.Qf2 Qh5 15.Nc3 Bd7 16.Qe2 Qh4+ 17.Bf2 Qh6 18.Ne4 Be7 19.Qe3 Qg6 20.O-O-O b6 21.Rhe1 O-O-O 22.Kb1 Rhe8 23.Nc3 Nc5 24.d4 Bh4 25.Qf3 Rf8 26.Qa8+ 1-0 Hartmann-Oechslein, Correspondence 1980) 7.O-O?! (7.d3! Bh4+ 8.Kf1 +=) 7....d5 8.exd6 cxd6 9.d3 Nf6 10.Bxf4 d5 11.Bb3 O-O 12.Nc3 Re8 13.d4 Bb4 14.Qd3 Bxc3 15.bxc3 a5 16.Bxb8 Rxb8 17.c4 Be6 18.Ng5 Qd7 19.Nxe6 Qxe6 20.cxd5 Qe4 21.Qxe4 fxe4 += 22.c4 Red8 23.c5 a4 24.Bxa4 Nxd5 25.Bb3 Kh8 26.Bxd5 Rxd5 27.Rfd1 h6 28.Kf2 Ra8 29.Rd2 Ra3 30.Re1 Rf5+ 31.Ke2 Rc3 32.Rb1 Rg5 33.g3 Rh5 34.Rh1 Rf5 35.Rb2 Rff3 36.Rd1 Rfe3+ 37.Kf2 Rf3+ 38.Kg2 g5 39.Re1 Rfe3 40.Rbe2 Rxe2+ 41.Rxe2 e3 42.Kf3 Rd3 43.Ke4 Rd2 44.Kxe3 1-0 Rosenthal-From, Paris 1867.

C8d6c) 4....Qe7!? 5.Nc3 c6 (5....fxe4 6.Nd5! Qh4+ 7.Kf1 Bd6 8.Nf3 Qh6 9.Qxe4+ Ne7 10.b3! Nbc6 11.Ba3 +=/±)

C8d6c1) 6.d3?! fxe4 7.Bxg8 Rxg8 8.Nxe4 d5 9.Nd6+ Kd7 10.Nxc8 Qh4+!? (10....Kxc8 11.Bxf4 =) 11.Kf1 Na6 12.Nf3 Qf6 13.Ne5+?! (13.Nxa7 =) 13....Kc7!? 14.Ng4 Qf7 15.Ne5 Qf5 16.Nxa7 Rxa7 17.Qf2 Bd6! =+ 18.Nf3 (18.Qxa7? Bc5! -+) 18....Raa8 19.Bd2 Nb4 (19....g5) 20.Bxb4 Bxb4 21.Nd4 Qf6 22.c3 Bd6 23.a4 Rge8 24.a5 Re3 -+ 25.Nc2 Qe7 26.Nxe3 fxe3 27.Qc2 Rf8+ 28.Ke1 Qh4+ 29.Kd1 Rf2 30.Qb3 e2+ 31.Kc1 Rf1+ 32.Kc2 e1=N+ 33.Rxe1 Qf2+ 0-1 Hawranke-Schoene, RLNN 1991.

C8d6c2) 6.d4!? b5 7.Bxg8 Rxg8 8.exf5 d5 9.Bxf4 =

C8d6c3) 6.e5! Qh4+ 7.Kf1 b5 8.Bb3 b4 9.Nf3 Qe7 10.Na4!? unclear, but White looks to be gaining the advantage.

C8d6d) 4....Qh4+ 5.Kd1! (5.Kf1?! fxe4 6.Qxe4+ Be7 7.Nf3 Qh5 8.Nc3 Nf6 9.Qxf4 d5 10.Qxc7 Nc6 11.Bb5 Bd7 12.Bxc6 bxc6 13.Qe5 O-O 14.Qxh5 Nxh5 15.d4 Bg4 16.Ke2 Rae8 17.Rf1 Bf6+ 18.Kd3 Bf5+ 19.Kd2 Nf4 20.g3 Ne6 21.Ne2 c5 22.c3 cxd4 23.Nexd4 Nxd4 24.cxd4 Bh3 25.Re1 Be7 26.Re3 Bb4+ 0-1 Schulten-Neumann, Berlin 1865) 5....fxe4 (5....Kd8 6.e5! +=; 5....Nf6 6.Nf3 Qh5 7.Nc3! += Glazkov Nc6 8.e5 Ne4 9.Nd5 Kd8 10.Nxf4 ±; 5....Ne7 6.Nf3 Qf6 7.e5 +=) 6.Qxe4+ (6.Nc3 Kd8! 7.Bxg8 Rxg8 8.Qxe4 g5 9.Nf3 Qh5 10.Nd5 Qg6! = Zukertort; 7.Nxe4 c6 8.Nf3 Qe7 9.Bxg8 Rxg8 10.d3 d5 11.Bxf4 h6 Dekker-Svitsar 1875 =) 6....Be7 (6....Ne7 7.Nf3 Qf6 8.d4 d5!? [8....c6 9.Qxf4 d5 10.Bd3 +=] 9.Bxd5 Bf5 10.Qe2 c6 11.Bb3 g5 12.Bd2 Nd7 13.Bc3! +=) 7.Nf3 (7.d4 Nf6 8.Qxf4 Qxf4 = Korchnoi) 7....Qh5 8.Re1 (Perhaps White can improve here with 8.Bxg8!? Rxg8 9.Nc3 Nc6 10.Nd5 Kd8 11.Nxf4 Qf7 12.Qxh7 d5 13.d3! Bf5 14.Qh5 g6 15.Ng5 Qf6 16.Qf3 += Cordel-Neumann, Paris 1867) 8....Nc6 9.Bxg8 (9.b4 Nf6 10.Qe2 d6 11.Bb2 a6 = W. C. Spenser, Chess Journal 1873, cited by Korchnoi) 9....Rxg8 10.Nc3 d6 (10....Kd8 11.Nd5!) 11.Nd5! Bf5 12.Qc4

C8d6d1) 12....Bxc2+?! 13.Ke2!
(The stem game continued instead 13.Qxc2? Qxd5 14.Qxh7 O-O-O 15.b3 Bf6 16.Rb1 g5 17.Qe4 Qxe4 18.Rxe4 g4 19.Ne1 Be5 20.Bb2 Bxb2 21.Rxb2 Rdf8 22.d3 d5 23.Ree2 Nd4 24.Rf2 Nf5 25.Kc1 Ne3 26.d4 g3 27.hxg3 fxg3 28.Rfe2 Nf5 29.Nf3 Nd6 30.Kd1 Ne4 31.Rbc2 Nf2+ 32.Ke1 Kd8 33.Re3 Ng4 34.Rec3 c6 35.Re2 Nh2 36.Nd2 Kd7 37.Ree3 Re8 38.Ke2 Kd6 39.b4 b6 40.a4 Rgf8 41.Rxe8 Rxe8+ 42.Re3 Rxe3+ 43.Kxe3 Ng4+ 44.Kf4 Nf2 45.b5 Nd3+ 46.Kxg3 c5 47.Kg4 c4 48.Kf5 c3 49.Nb3 c2 50.g4 c1=Q 51.Nxc1 Nxc1 52.g5 Nb3 53.Kf6 Nxd4 54.g6 Ne6 55.Kf5 d4 56.Ke4 Ke7 0-1 Mayet-Neumann, Berlin 1866.)

C8d6d1a) 13....Bg6 14.Nxc7+ Kd7 15.Nxa8 +=

C8d6d1b) 13....Qg6 (Hoffer-Grischfeld, London 1882) 14.Kf2! Kd7?! 15.Rxe7+! +- Glazkov.

C8d6d1c) 13....Ne5! 14.Qxc7 Qf7 (14....Bf6 15.Kf2 Bd3 16.Qxd6; 14....Bd3+ 15.Kd1 += Glazkov) 15.Qxb7 Rd8 (15....Bd3+ 16.Kd1 Rd8 17.Nxe5 Glazkov) 16.d4! (16.Kf1 Bd3+ 17.Kg1 Kf8 18.Qxe7+ [18.Nc7!? unclear, but not Glazkov's 18.Nd4? Bh4! =+] 18....Qxe7 19.Nxe7 Kxe7 20.Nxe5 dxe5 21.Rxe5+ Kd6 22.Ra5 =) 16....Nxf3 17.gxf3 Bh4 18.Qc6+ Kf8 19.Bxf4 += White seems to be winning here.

C8d6d2) 12....Bg4! (= Keres)

C8d6d2a) 13.Nf6+?? gxf6 14.Qxg8+ Kd7 15.Rxe7+!? Kxe7 16.Qxa8? Bxf3+ 17.gxf3 Qxf3+ 18.Ke1 Nd4 -+

C8d6d2b) 13.c3 Bxf3+ 14.gxf3 Qxf3+ 15.Kc2 Ne5 16.Rxe5!? dxe5 17.Nf6+ gxf6 18.Qxg8+ Bf8 19.Qe6+ Be7! 20.Qg8+ Bf8 21.Qe6+ =

C8d6d2c) 13.Nxc7+ Kd7 14.Nxa8 Bxf3+ 15.gxf3 Qxf3+ 16.Qe2 Qxe2+ 17.Kxe2 f3+! 18.Kf1 Rxa8 =


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